Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Dairy Product Supports.

40.

asked the Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries if any discussion has taken place with the EEC on the level of support this country will get as a member from EEC funds for exports of dairy produce to third countries; and if special consideration will be given to the need to preserve traditional markets in these countries.

The levels of support available from Community funds for exports of dairy produce from Ireland to third countries would be those fixed from time to time for such exports from the Community as a whole in accordance with the relevant Community regulations. During the transitional period, however, the support will be adjusted to take account of the price differences between the new member country and the present Community. The details of these adjustments fall to be determined later this year.

As members of the enlarged Community it would, of course, be open to us at all times to seek to have provision made in the fixing of export support rates for any particular export interest we might have in third country markets.

Will the Minister agree that it might be wise to make these arrangements now so that Bord Bainne and other bodies can be assured that they will be able to preserve their present marketing links in many countries?

I would like to know what particular third country markets in dairy products the Deputy has in mind. I do not know of any myself.

The West Indies.

I would expect that the market prospects, even those we have now before entry and certainly those after entry, would be far more lucrative than those.

Is the Minister aware that Bord Bainne are very anxious to preserve their markets in the West Indies and have expressed concern that they should be able to get Community funds to enable them to do so?